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Stanford University Networking Seminar


Aki Nakao (University of Tokyo)
FLARE : Open Deeply Programmable Network Node Architecture

12:00pm, Thursday October 18, 2012
Gates 104

About the Talk

This talk introduces our recent research on the network node architecture called FLARE that enables deep programmability within the network. Deep programmability refers to not only the control plane programmability for route control, network management, etc., the recent SDN research deals with, but also the data plane programmability for processing traffic data and parsing new protocols, e.g., even non-Internet protocols. The FLARE architecture introduces multiple isolated programming environments where we can flexibly and deeply program innovative in-network services such as new switching logics, packet caching and DPI, and run them all concurrently at the line speed or switching among them on demand. Even a version of OpenFlow switching becomes one of the in-network services that can be programmed within the FLARE architecture. We have implemented several prototype versions of switches and WiFi APs based on the FLARE architecture applying resource container techniques to a combination of many-core network processors and x86 general purpose processors. We discuss the capability of FLARE switches and FLARE WiFi APs from the stand-point of enabling in-network services and even redesigning the Internet, by demonstrating multiple different network architectures (even non-standard protocols) run simultaneously or enabled/disabled dynamically, such as the original OpenFlow, modified OpenFlow, extended MAC/VLAN ID (non-Internet-standard protocol) and the standard Ethernet switching logics. We also introduce a light-weight network virtualization technique called “trailer slicing” as a viable application of FLARE switches to network virtualization for wired/wireless converged edge networks.

About the Speaker

Akihiro Nakao received B.S.(1991) in Physics, M.E.(1994) in Information Engineering from the University of Tokyo. He was at IBM Yamato Laboratory/at Tokyo Research Laboratory/at IBM Texas Austin from 1994 till 2005. He received M.S.(2001) and Ph.D.(2005) in Computer Science from Princeton University. He has been teaching as an Associate Professor in Applied Computer Science, at Interfaculty Initiative in Information Studies, Graduate School of Interdisciplinary Information Studies, the University of Tokyo since 2005. (He has also been an expert visiting scholar/a project leader at National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NICT) since 2007.